Checklist: How to Love Your Family without Getting Pulled Into the Drama

Loving your family isn’t always easy, especially if there’s a lot of drama. You may not be able to control what your family members do. But you don’t have to get pulled into their drama either. Here’s what you can do to stay out of the fray…

Sow Grace Where You Can

  • Focus on the good. Compliment your family members for what they do well and encourage them in these pursuits.

  • Have conversation starters ready. Some family members can be negative. Keep a list of conversation starters with you and use them to re-direct discussions that are going nowhere.

  • Be grateful. If a family member prepared dinner, helped you out, or did another kind task for you, express your thanks.

  • Tell a sweet story. When things get heated during a conversation, bring up a beloved memory and how much it meant to you. You might need to prepare ahead of time.

  • Practice forgiveness. Don’t carry around old hurts from years past. If needed, confront your family member and move on.

  • Walk away. If a family member is trying to bait you in an argument, change the subject or leave the room.

  • Pray during events. As you interact with your family, ask God to give you wisdom and discernment on how to handle them.

Set Up Healthy Boundaries

  • Limit your time together. You don’t have to go away for an extended vacation with your family. Look for small blocks of time you could spend together such as having dinner or attending a concert.

  • Stop trying to “save” family members. Whether it’s a drug addiction or another problem, let your loved ones make their own choices.
  • Don’t stand for abusive communication. Screaming, yelling, or manipulating aren’t acceptable communication methods. If someone you love uses these tactics, quickly end the conversation.
    • Let it ring. Just because a family member calls you on the phone, texts you or sends you an email doesn’t mean you must rush to answer. It’s OK to wait until you have the emotional energy to deal with them before you take action.
      • Communicate the consequences. If you a family member’s bad behavior has gotten to you, create clear consequences and follow through on them. For example, “If you yell at me on the phone, Mom, I will hang up.”

      • Don’t offer apologies. Setting boundaries is an act of love for you and your family. You don’t have to apologize or compromise. Your family will eventually accept your new boundaries if you stick to them for a season.

      • Give yourself time to recover. If spending time with family puts you in a funk, always plan for recovery time after each interaction with them. You’ll be happier and healthier for it!

      Change the Legacy

      • Prepare for triggers. Consider what triggers drama in your family and seek to avoid—or at least leave before—these triggers show up.

      • Evaluate your past. Think about what you want to do differently with your kids or your spouse. Ask yourself what patterns you want to change in the next generation.

      • Stop playing the part. If you’re tired of always being the responsible one or the go-between, then don’t do it anymore. Discovering (and changing) your role in your family’s drama can be freeing.

      • Surround yourself with healthy role models. Who do you know that’s raising an amazing family? Spend time with them and learn from their example.

      • Read about relationships. Understanding relationships can be eye-opening! A few good books to start with include: The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman, Boundaries by Henry Cloud & John Townsend, and The DNA of Relationships by Gary Smalley. (Note: The links in this paragraph are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase)

      • Seek counseling. Healing from difficult family relationships is hard but you don’t have to do it alone. Look for a godly therapist who can walk with you during this time.

      • Ask for prayer. Choose a friend or two you trust not to gossip about your family and tell them what’s going on. Request that they pray with and for you regularly.

      Other blog posts on Family Drama:

      7-Day Devotional on Family Drama

      Bible Verses About Family Drama

      Free Bible Verse Printables

      Join our Bible Verse printables email club! You will receive a FREE monthly printable, one of our special designs. Each file is a pdf that you can print from your computer. Put up one of our beautiful prints on every wall in your house and let the Word of God renew your mind.

      Click HERE to join, I will send it to you, plus another free scripture printable each month.

      Older Post Newer Post

      Leave a Comment

      Please note, comments must be approved before they are published